CIS-FSU Chapter Event "The Evolving JOA Worldwide"

Tuesday, May 29, 2018 (6:30pm - 9:30pm Europe/Moscow)
Morgan Lewis Offices
Legend Business Center, Tsvetnoi Bulvar 2, Entrance "B"
Russian Federation

Eduardo Pereira, Adjunct Professor, University of Colombia and University of Oslo
Anna Ovcharova, Head of Legal, Russia, Repsol

Please join the CIS-FSU Chapter for "The Evolving JOA Worldwide." Historically, oil and gas upstream activities around the world were largely open to foreign investment, but the process of nationalization in recent decades has concentrated the majority of natural resources with national oil companies (NOCs). Accordingly, it is becoming more common these days for international oil companies (IOCs) to be dealing with NOCs to create new and specific legal arrangements regulating their alliance.

The JOA form of agreement, initially created by the American Association of Petroleum Landmen (AAPL) in the 1950s, and since then developed by the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN) and other organizations and government agencies around the world, was originally intended to be a private document to regulate the relationship between private investors. Developments in national laws in recent years have established a requirement in many countries for NOC participation in upstream projects as partners in a JOA or a variation of such agreement. As a result, JOAs are now acquiring the features of public agreements, since NOCs are commonly a party, and their presence is likely to dictate some different rules and features.

In other words, the main point is that JOAs are not well designed for NOCs for all contexts globally (particularly for smaller NOCs and/or in countries with heavy regulatory protections for/involving their NOC). This observation applies as well to the AIPN model JOA form, as there are only limited options to be selected. It simply does not work in several different legal regimes that require NOC participation such as Angola, Morocco, Bolivia, and others — as they have specific peculiarities and protections for the NOC in their legal system. Also, some host governments end up developing and enacting their own model JOA form, such as Morocco, Norway, Greenland, etc.

This presentation examines the key concerns and challenges that IOCs and NOCs face in this new joint venture environment and suggests alternative solutions for finding common ground between parties. There could also be relevance here for the further development of the AIPN JOA and other standard forms.

The speakers are well-versed in this topic, as they are co-authors of the book “Joint Operating Agreements: A Comparison Between IOC and NOC Perspectives,” published in 2015 and is currently undergoing updates.

Refreshments will be served after the event.

Registration is complimentary for members, non-members, and students. Please RSVP by contacting Marina Ryzhkova at

Special thanks to event-sponsor:        Morgan Lewis